The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Michigan: Living in freedom

Fleeing Saddam Hussein's regime in 1991, Nidda Al-Hisnawi's parents and four brothers made it to Kuwait's border. But then her mother returned to her daughter's home to retrieve something.

Al-Hisnawi's husband drove his mother-in-law back to the border. Although the in-laws eventually made it safely to the United States, Hussein's forces took note.

"They got [my husband's] license plate number, and they caught him because they said he was helping his in-laws flee the country," Al-Hisnawi said through an interpreter. Hussein's men constantly watched them and occasionally picked up her husband for interrogation and beatings. After they took him in 1995, she never saw him again. Years later she got word he'd died in jail — code that he had been killed. "They never say they kill people," she said. "They say they had a heart attack or something."

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February issue


Embracing diversity